New GPS keeps teen drivers in check

Published: Jul. 12, 2012 at 12:28 AM CDT|Updated: Jul. 19, 2012 at 12:28 AM CDT
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It's not easy for parents to hand over the keys to their teenage drivers. Most of the time you just have to hope for the best.

But now AAA is promoting a new GPS device that may help keep teenage drivers in check, and give their parents a little peace of mind.

Imagine being able to know all about your teenagers driving habits, like when they leave, when they got there, and if they were driving too fast on the way.

The technology exists. AAA calls it AAA Onboard.

"It's not about trusting your teens. It's more about inexperience. Young people don't have the same amount of experience as you and I do behind the wheel," said Doug Shupe with AAA Public Affairs.

The car has to be a 1996 model or newer and have diagnostic port to plug into. Every false move is logged and sent real time to their parents on their computers or smartphones. Although some teens might be a little reluctant to have their driving monitored.

"It's kinda weird to think about it, like they are following and watching, but it's for my greater good so," said teen driver Maran Rodden.

"I don't want to say it's a big brother device, but it's kinda like being a 2nd parent in the car," said Tracy Rodden, Maran mother.

The device allows a parent to set a maximum speed, boundaries, and times the car is to be in use. If anything happens outside of those boundaries, an alert is sent. If the teen tries to remove the device, that won't work either, mom and dad get an alert for that too.

"It will serve as a coaching tool for parents. When they see these alerts come in, they can talk to their teens about the importance of following the rules of the road," Shupe said.

To get the device you have to be a AAA member and have an insurance policy covering a teen.